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240z SCCA vintage race car, restoration

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@clarkspeed I really appreciate that Clark! Considering 18 months ago I was ready to sell her after discovering 1/3 of the car was Swiss-cheese and not knowing how to weld. Y’all here have been a big motivation, and it is truly appreciated! 

10-4 on the speedo. I can do without.


Ordered the hole Saws for the gauges. I’m happy with the location/shape of the cardboard cutout so ready to start bending some AL sheet. 

10-4 on the polycarbonate. Figured this should go in before the engine, Since the fasteners are going-in from outside the cab. Back in my model-building days, I learned to polish clear plastic with polishing compound and a buffer. I assumed this would work on polycarbonate? As long as the scratches aren’t deep, one should be able to buff-out minor scratches. 

On the air box, looking at what you did motivates me to fabricate something myself. The velocity stacks for the SU’s though… Would you 3D print your own again or is someone selling those? If not, I would be interested!



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New consideration: driving to and from the track. I don’t have room for a trailer at my tiny California home, so I don’t have many options other than driving to/from. It’s a straight 1.5 hour drive from my home, almost entirely in interstates. the car is registered and insured. What considerations could I look at for reducing my chances of being pulled-over and worse…referred to a referee? Not trying to “cheat” my CHP friends, but rather make her as street legal as I can! Some of my thoughts:


1) engine is OEM other than the cam really, so not too worried about having to pop the engine bay.


2) rear brake lights are needed anyways, so still have those. 

3) even though the headlight buckets have been replaced with nose cones, I still plan on fabricating-in much smaller SAE LEF driving lights into my air dam for unexpected night driving. 

4) turn signal…. I would need to add a universal column switch and small LED’s in the front. Rear’s would still work being OEM fixtures. 

5) will be running the longest burns stainless muffler I can. Maybe. 12 or 16”. 

6) being EP, the body is OEM shape/look. Will need flares but that’s pretty minor. 

anything else I may have not considered! Is this a dumb idea? 

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Attempting to be the ever practical engineer, I thought I could get away with the sealer primer as my only coat to cut-back on weight. Now having experienced it fully cured, it is far too porous to leave alone. I can see oil and dirt caking on this surface pretty easily.

Got a hold of urethane clear coat, and figured I might as well get a base-coat while I’m at it. In my experience, black and silver require the least amount of basecoat (by weight) to achieve full coverage. Im not an expert, this is just from first-hand experience airbrushing model cars. 

Decided yo go with a neutral metallic silver basecoat, as it will reflect heat and not absorb it the way black will. Silver also tends to “look” better” when dirty than compared to pure (TiO2) white or pure (C2) black. Seemed reasonable for an engine bay and interior finish. 


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Yea, dumb idea. Just kidding, its been done many times. A drag race friend of mine pushes car out to highway and callsAAA for a tow If something beaks at track.  I suggest renting an open trailer from Uhaul when you go. Really not that expensive in the big picture. Me and feiends rent them to transport cars around. You might be able to find someone who will rent out cheaper.


Yea, I can do some more stacks. I print in either nylon or carbon nylon so the heat is not a problem. I will get you a price.


I'm glad my photo inspired you! Not that hard. You could weld up some sheetmetal if you like. Every scca car has some custom fab thing in there. The box is easy, getting air filtered from a high pressure zone is not so easy.



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Of and I use the Novus cleaner and polish on polycarbonate. Expensive but lasts forever. Only problem I ever had was dropping some goop solvent cleaner on it one time when I was cleaning tire marks off the roof. It stained immediate. Yes tire klag gets kicked all the way to the front roof line.



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So my second problem is, I’m not sure my little Toyota Mirai can pull a trailer 😂. I may need to look to a more powerful vehicle in the future. 

yeah let me know how much the stacks would be :). I built and integrated intake scoop into my rad support for the engine air, so now I just need to figure out how to filter and plumb to the SU’s. 

i have some 20-gauge stainless I could use for the air box. I don’t have a TIG welder, and I feel thin steel may not be too heavy if I grind my welds. We will see! 

really appreciate all the support Clark. Greg and the folks here really deserve a lot of credit for the build thus far.  

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I just googled a Toyota Marai is  car? No you will not tow with that. Best to think big picture here. Race school to see if this works for you (using a school car). Then set your goals. If hooked and comitted you will find the best path forward. Could be sell and find something faster? Could be finish for another class? Could be EP for me baby. And could be ronoffs, then pro. Or could be this is so expensive, not worth it. 

Alternative is start doing open track days with someone. Drive to and from. But that will be such a nice car I suggest the former.

Edited by clarkspeed
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It is a fuel-cell car haha! I build the fueling facilities and got a really, really good deal on it. Has the torque of a stock Corolla though, but weighs as much as a Camry. The savings on gas and a car payment is funding the Z. 

You touch on a really good point though, Clark. I need to get realistic about my future plan for the car. My plan a year ago was to sell the car when done but I really poured my heart and soul in this guy. I suppose this is a common problem with folks who are

more confident with their fabrication/patience/focus than they may have financial ability to race. 

tell me, why do you suggest using their car when taking the novice race class? I thought using the Z would save me $500, but it sounds like you have something else in mind.


if I wanted to start light (financially), would it be best to take some track days to start? Maybe vintage racing? I need to develop a road-map with a realistic budget. 

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- Got my polycarbonate for the windshield. 
- reduced the weight of the gauge cluster to less than 2lbs. 
- will be mounting the power disconnect in the hole created in the top of the gauge cluster 

- purchased black epoxy and matte clear for the gauge cluster, windshield bars.

- continuing to remove multiple layers of paint in the interior and prepare for primer. 
- replaced riveted windshield bars with -10 screws and nut inserts. 







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Posted (edited)

I did a thing… so this style of sheet metal behind the seats in unique to a series 1. Series 2 and on had little storage doors instead. Taking inspiration to Greg Ira’s car, I was surprised it was 7lbs worth! I left a flange and gusset out to reinforce the front diff mount which requires rigidity. Now on to tidying it up. I wonder if someone might want this piece to mimic a series one 🤷🏽‍♂️

...Also closed up the gap between the roll bar and my passenger rocker. Filled some unnecessary holes On the trans tunnel. 

I think this will be the last of the weight removal. Now to tie the roll cage to a few more unibody spots and clean up the interior for epoxy. 












Edited by AydinZ71
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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 2 weeks later...
Posted (edited)

Continuing to remove the finish inside the car to prep for primer. Stitch welding several of the OEM sheet metal lap joints, and tying the roll cage to various spots on the unibody. This part is tedious… 

Also ground-down the PO’ roll cage welds and re-welded with a thicker filet, confirming fusion and using pre-heat to make the puddle sit flatter. 
also cleaned-up the fuel cell cover. Sucker is 7lbs! Checked the rule book and it does state “metal”,  but not a thickness. Thinking about trying a box frame and thinner (.025” maybe?) AL for the skin. 







Edited by AydinZ71
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Yes, finally someone who mounts a cell where it should be! Below the deck. If you can remove cell from the bottom you only need a tiny little trap door for fueling. And yes " metal" between cell and driver. So maybe aluminum foil is legal? Just kidding, but thick enough so it doesn't crumble.

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@clarkspeed that's a good idea! I’m not confident I can reach the bolts from underneath but it’s worth looking at. A small door to access the fuel fill would be ideal! Il have to look at that. 7lbs is 7lbs. 

This is the struggle with building a car… every time you see the finish line, an idea for improvement pops up and says “not yet…” 😂

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Hi all! Need your help on the shoulder strap mounts for the 5-point harness. The cage as it came from the PO has this 1/8” plate with bolt holes for the shoulder straps. Seeing how close and level the roll cage is to shoulder elevation, is like to just cut this out and use the cage itself as a loop-mount vs a bolted mount. Any thoughts? 

i designed the car to have a passenger “joy ride” seat, and I will do the same for that side. 




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